North-east politicians in plea after damning Brexit report

Aberdeenshire East MSP Gillian Martin fears Brexit is going to be incredibly damaging to the North Sea oil and gas industry.
Aberdeenshire East MSP Gillian Martin fears Brexit is going to be incredibly damaging to the North Sea oil and gas industry.

North East politicians have called on Tory MPs to ensure the region is protected after it was revealed Aberdeen’s economy could take the biggest hit from both a hard or soft Brexit.

New research has revealed leaving the European Union would impact Europe’s oil capital harder than any other city in the UK.

The findings, which were made by the thinktank Centre for Cities, were released today.

Earlier this year the chief executive of industry body Oil & Gas UK warned there would be £500million hit to the sector every year in trade agreements following the exit from the European Union.

Meanwhile, the head of the Centre for Cities Andrew Carter, said any form of Brexit is expected to be damaging but a hard Brexit would be twice as damaging to the region.

Aberdeenshire East MSP Gillian Martin said: “The findings from the Centre for Cities echo what we already know – that Brexit is going to be incredibly damaging to the North Sea oil and gas industry.

“The impact will have a trickledown effect into the supply chain and local economy which is already suffering from the oil and gas downturn.

“It is extremely worrying that the Tory MPs who represent the North East are in support of Brexit rather than protecting this vital sector and the region’s economic development.

“I would urge them all to think again before it is too late. Aberdeen has access to countries across the world due to the very EU treaties we will no longer have access too.

“Sectors including oil and gas, food and drink and the health and social care sector will all have considerably more difficulty in a post-Brexit economy.

“And the damaging effect of a hard Brexit on our universities and colleges will further impact on the local economy .”

Banffshire and Buchan Coast MSP Stewart Stevenson added: “The North-East is going to see the biggest reduction in our economic output as a result of our exit from the European Union.

“Any agreements must be as close to our current trade agreements as possible but it quite obvious the Tories have no desire to ensure that.”